Lancers look to contend this year in tough Metro Conference
by Mike Singleton
So close last year to making a run in the state playoffs only to come up short in a thrilling but dramatic loss to St. Catherine’s has the St. Joseph Academy baseball team aiming high this season. “It was heart breaking loss" said senior Pete Schuler in recollection. “That loss is going to drive us this year to reach our goal, which is a conference title, and ultimately a state championship.”
The season outlook and projections are looking very promising for this year’s team. The Lancers are preseason favorites, ranking sixth in the state in Division III, and third in conference behind St. Thomas Moore, and Racine Prairie Lutheran. The Lancers return a solid core group of seniors in Jimmy O' Lear, Myron Glass Jr, Jared Millan, Kyle Cable, Pete Schuler, and Michael Singleton. Despite a solid group of returning seniors, they are going to have to rely on the younger classmen to step up and take on the challenge as well.
The Lancers have had very successful seasons the past couple years and this year is looking just as promising as the last. Coach Ron Schuler, who is in his fifth year as head coach, boasts a positive outlook. “We are picked behind two very solid teams, but I feel that our leaders are going to drive this team, and I think we will compete and win that conference title that they deserve.” Added Kyle Cable, “It would be nice to win a championship before we leave and what better way to do it than in baseball, in our last chance to prove to the conference that is the best.”
The Lancers are led by Kent State recruit Pete Schuler, who last year had a tremendous year earning a number of honors including First Team All-Conference Honors and First Team All-County Honors while finishing second in the conference’s player of the year voting. They are also led by senior Kyle Cable, who made major strides last season, but was denied any honors even though many considered him a First Team All-Conference Selection. Cable will surely use the loss and his snubbing as fire to make them realize that he is deserving of high honors. Senior Michael Singleton, a First Team All-Conference Selection and 2nd Team All-County Selection, man’s centerfield, anchoring the defense down the middle.
Well, the outlook is bright for the Lancers, but they will only succeed if they put the work in this preseason and don’t get complacent throughout the year. The ultimate goal is State, but they will have to take it one step at a time and go from there. Look out for the Lancers this year as they look to be a force to be reckoned with.
Track team off and running
by Grace Wavro
The St. Joseph Catholic Academy Track and Field team is off and running!
Practice got underway March 9, and despite losing 25 seniors last year, the Lancers are hoping to be conference champs again. Per usual, the team has high expectations. Consider this: the boys have been conference champs the past four years, while the girls have been conference champs the past two years. The 2015 team hopes to continue this tradition of excellence even with the smaller numbers.
The current version consists mostly of freshman and sophomores. The squad boasts just three seniors: J.D. Ford, Angelyn Gallagher, and Marcus Haworth. With such a young team, the Lancers will be faced with competing against much older competition but will rely on tradition to help get them up to speed. The boys will also look to repeat as regional champs while the girls will look to better their top 10 finish at regionals. Multiple competitors advanced to sectionals and then on to the state meet last season.
The newcomers certainly have some big shoes to fill. With a little less than half the team last year, this team, while leaner, will rely on quality over quantity. A number of freshman, and a few sophomores are returning back to track after a short hiatus from the sport, a good sign. Both the boys and the girls opened the indoor season at the Lake Michigan Invitational held at Carthage College. (Please return to this website for further updates.)
High school golf team to hit the links
by Patrick Rafferty
Spring is here. The snow is melting, life blooms anew, and the chirping of birds can be heard.
Students and staff at St. Joseph’s Academy are ready for spring’s return and that means spring sports are gearing up for another season. With everyone pining for the warmth of the sun, there’s no better place to savor the enthusiasm for spring than the golf course.
“I am so excited to finally go out and play the game I have been playing for four years now. I am so excited and it couldn’t come any quicker,” said senior captain Ben Berman.
Added sophomore Josh Moser, “This is my first year of playing golf; I think golf is the best sport to play during the spring, It will allow me to enjoy nature and really have a great time.” Almost every golf player interviewed couldn’t be more excited about spring. Now all that is keeping them from the course is the slowly melting snow which is a torturing tease for these anxious golfers.
The golf season may yet start at the end of this month, or perhaps early in April, but the clubs have already been taken out of storage and are ready to be put into active service. The St. Joseph’s golf team has 14 players as of this report, and every single one of them is ecstatic for the season to be finally here.
Lancers close out successful season with record of 16-8 overall
Thrilling, close games against rivals are defining moments of the season
by Kyle Cable
The curtain fell on a thrilling season of basketball at St. Joseph Catholic Academy with a season-ending loss to Racine St. Catherine’s, 55-49, in the regional final. Despite the tough loss, the Lancers took heart in finishing with a record of 16-8 overall—a stellar .667 winning percentage and a slight improvement over the previous year (15-9).
The winning record, though impressive, wasn’t fully representative of how positive the players and their fans felt about the season. “It was a really good year for our team and I am going to miss how well our team got along,” said senior captain Pete Schuler, an honorable mention all-conference selection.
The losses in conference came against Whitefish Bay Dominican (twice), St. Catherine’s (twice), and Racine Lutheran (once). Most of the losses came in close games, with the Lancers fighting to pull out a win to the very end. Other losses came in the regular season against Indian Trail High School and Bradford High School.
The Lancers will miss the contributions of some outstanding seniors. Kyle Cable, Myron Glass, Michael McGonegle, Peter Schuler, and Michael Singleton are the notable upper classmen who helped lead by example, influencing the newer members on the varsity team. Returning players include second year varsity player and sophomore captain Deandre John, sophomore Jeremiah Madden, juniors Collin Isetts, Jakob Powers, Zachery Hanner, David Jamison, Jalen Jouett, and Nolan Rhey.
The future indeed looks bright for the Lancers. The Junior Varsity JV2 team went undefeated in conference while the Junior Varsity JV1 team showed scores of potential. Don’t count out the Lancers for next season!
Photo by Wangkai Wei
Wanted: Writers to create a character in social writing club
Junior Wangkai Wei is putting out a call to fellow students interested in forming a fantasy world social writing club.
“The proposed club would combine all the people who love English writing and allow them to write together which means writing in the same story world. Every group member would be expected to create their own character and story line but the story line would conform to the story world,” said Wei.
Once a number of chapters have been completed, Wei proposes opening the story world to the rest of the school on a website they could access via QR code. “After they get in the website they can read the novel and leave comments on it so that we can improve it based on reader feedback,” Wei said.
As this is yet in the exploratory phase, Wei is asking all interested writers to contact him via email in order to gauge interest. Due to the nature of the work, club membership will be limited to no more than 10 writers.
News St Joe's, Local, National, World
Long time history teacher and coach Jon Furreness hits the 20 year mark
by Madelyn Scopp
When Jon Furreness speaks of a firing cannon, he could be talking about one used in the Civil War, or he might be preparing his athletes for the start of a cross country race. History teacher, track and field coach, cross country coach. A few titles he’s obtained throughout his 20 years here at SJCA.
Furreness typically teaches U.S. History, but recently has taught World History, American Government, and American Issues. During the fall, Furreness coaches both the boys and girls cross country teams, while in the spring he is head coach of the track and field teams. He’s been around a while, but there are a few things you may not know about him. One being that he didn’t run cross country in high school or college. Furreness grew up in a small, rural farm community in Minnesota where opportunities were limited and cross country wasn’t even offered as a sport. He played basketball and ran track in high school, and in college he played baseball one year and ran track all four years.
How many state champions have you coached?
“I have been very fortunate as a track and cross country coach to have some really great athletes in our program during my 20 years at St. Joe’s. Ten of my track athletes have been State Champions including current Social Studies teacher and coach, Mr. Hernandez. In cross country, I have coached five individual and one team state champion. Currently, there are 15 St. Joseph Alumni competing in collegiate track and cross country around the country. It’s great getting a text or phone call from an alumnus who just ran a personal best at a college meet or the priceless picture of several of my former runners at the same track or cross country meet in their different college uniforms standing there together. I have also enjoyed watching some of my former students go into teaching or coaching and one of my running alums is currently working for USATF, which is the National Governing Body of Track & Field in the United States.”
What made you want to be, or inspired you to be a coach?
“My high school experience lacked positive coaching of any kind. However, when I was competing in college, we had a graduate assistant coach who ran with us every day and got to know us for who we were and not for how fast we could run. His passion for the sport of running and the study of history was very contagious and made an impression on me. It was then when I felt coaching and teaching could be an option. Having experienced both good and bad coaches, I felt like I knew enough of the difference that I could make a positive impact on my athletes. Also, since I grew up on a farm I understood the importance of nurturing and patience. Just as it takes time for a seed to grow from the ground and bare fruit, it takes time for child to mature into an adult.”
What’s been the best part of teaching at St. Joe’s?
“St. Joes provides a small school atmosphere in a religious setting. I enjoy getting to know most of the students in school whether through class or sports. Coming to school and being around teachers and administrators who have been committed to serving every student has been very inspiring for me. When I come to school I feel a sense of being home, which might be part of the reason that in the 20 years I have been teaching at St. Joe’s I have only missed one day of school because I was sick. Many of my friends say that I’m ‘living the dream’ because I have found a profession which is challenging and keeps me coming back for more every year.”
Why are sports important to the development of children, especially teens?
“I think sports can be an important component of a young person developing confidence and a sense of self. It’s also important not to allow an athlete’s self esteem to get too tied up in their sport. I always tell my student/athletes, “You are not a runner, you are someone who runs”. There are appropriate times to look at outcomes, but sometimes it’s much more important for the athlete to just partake in the sport. I try not to compare one athlete to another, but push them individually to do things they never thought were possible. Once those barriers are broken, there is no telling how much they are capable of achieving in any aspect of their life.”
What does it take to succeed in running?
“Many people say that running is a sport best appreciated when it’s over, and after running several marathons I would tend to agree. I think one of the hardest aspects of running is taking the first step. When I am talking to my athletes I try to stress to them that one of the most important aspects of becoming a successful runner is to ‘develop the habit’ of running. I try to start with low levels of commitment and then gradually push a greater commitment to coincide with their level of confidence. I like to call this process ‘setting the hook’. Once the hook is set, which might take several years to achieve, then the athlete is ready to grow exponentially. Growing up on a dairy farm, I quickly learned about commitment, humility and a strong work ethic while doing chores 24/7/365. The same characteristics are important traits in a good runner. However, I feel like the main job of a high school coach isn’t to win, but to help provide advice, guidance and structure which may allow the kids to develop as an athlete and a person. I think this can be transformational in their lives, just as it was in my own. Focusing on the correct process is a key to successful running. I always tell my runners that being successful or winning is just the natural outcome of developing the habit of running.”
What is the best part of teaching at a private, religious school?
“Over my 20 years teaching at St. Joe’s I have found that the students, parents, staff and administration here at St. Joes have consistently treated me with respect and have made me feel loved even though I more than likely have numerous faults as a teacher and a coach. I feel like St. Joe’s has given me an opportunity to improve upon my weaknesses and I feel a strong desire to do my part for the greater good of our institution.”
How is religion important in your own life? Is that why you teach here?
“When I was competing in high school and college I felt a tremendous sense of glorifying God with my athletic performances. Now, I feel the same sense of God present in me when I serve my students in the classroom and my athletes on the track or on the cross country course.”
Opinion Reviews, Editorials, Misc.
Powerlifting: A sport that is trending
by Andrew Doan
The crowd roars, “UP...UP...UP!” and the atmosphere smells of blood, sweat, tears and chalk! Yes, chalk. This is the “hardcore” sport of powerlifting. While many people don’t know what powerlifting is, it’s a sport that requires a strong body as well as a strong mind.
So what is powerlifting? There are three basic lifts: squat, deadlift and a personal favorite the bench. The goal is to move the bar from point A to point B… sounds easy right? The three lifts are judged by three officials who give commands to start, rack, … etc. They also help to make sure one doesn’t “cheat” on lifts. For example, the lifter must break parallel when squatting. These judges will give the lifter either a green/white or red light to show that he has or has not met the standard.
The poundages for the three lifts are then added together to give the lifter his “total.”. Of course many professional powerlifters lift to earn money, beat others, break records. Many people, both men and women, love beating their own past records (PR’s) and enjoy the competition, people, and the atmosphere of it all.
“Contrary to what people think, lifting won’t make a woman look like a man, that’s from steroids,” said Jean Fry, professional powerlifter. A lot of people who compete say that it’s like a big family; everyone is supportive and encouraging.
This is a sport where physical strength and mental strength coincide. “Holding that amount of weight in your hands is an ultimate feeling beyond that of anything you could understand unless you do it,” said Scott Mendelson when asked why he powerlifts. Mendelson knows of what he speaks. He held the all-time world record in the raw and geared bench press.
“I don’t think you can make someone have discipline and determination. I think it comes from within… you either have it or you don’t, you either really want to be strong and push the potential for human strength or you don’t,” said Jeremy Hamilton. Hamilton holds a 2017 pound total, competing in the 220-pound weight class. Hamilton, along with many big names in powerlifting competed in the pinnacle of raw powerlifting--Raw Unity Meet VII.
The highly prestigious contest was held in and February. Many world records were set at RUM VII and many more will be broken in the future as the contest has lived up to its name as one of the most important raw meets in North America.
Powerlifting requires a lot of discipline to go in the gym everyday and push yourself to the limit. It also requires a lot of mental focus to not be afraid to get under the bar and keep it from crushing you. It really is a dangerous sport, one that many people get injured from.
When asked about injury prevention in this sport Mark Bell said, “You have to make sure you check yourself before you wreck yourself.” Bell is commonly known as “the people’s coach,” one of the more famous powerlifters in the world, appearing in the movie “Bigger, Stronger, Faster.”
Taking the time to warm up properly, perfecting your form on exercises, and wearing protective gear will help tremendously in prolonging one’s career in this sport.
This sport is continuing to grow tremendously and is one of the new trends in the fitness industry. This is a sport where anyone can get stronger. Show up in the weight room tomorrow and start a new, positive, healthy lifestyle.